With all due respect to the James Dean classic, that fine work only took in roughly 1/3 of the novel. The 1981 TV miniseries is a great example of how to transfer a literary work onto film.The writers managed to keep all the main characters, most of the secondary ones, and keep true to the story too....no small feat. The cast was impeccably chosen--they looked and acted just as they were written. (A curious exception: Kate and Aaron--described as fair and blonde in the book--and Cal--dark and somber--were physically just the opposite in Jane Seymour, Hart Bochner and Sam Bottoms)....but why nitpick? Their performances make THAT inconsequential. Miss Seymour will probably be best remembered as Dr. Michaela Quinn, or as TV-movie royalty, but her performance as Kate should be the standout---she walked right out of the pages of the novel. She's electric in her scenes with Bruce Boxleitner, who is excellent as kindred spirit Charles Trask. And when with her husband (Timothy Bottoms, restrained and aloof, just as Adam was written)she does the spectrum, from loving innocence to the incarnation of evil. A must-see for anyone who's ever read the book--SEE IT. You won't be sorry.
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